84

My own upbringing and later career has followed much the same trajectory as you describe, so this is something I too have pondered quite a bit. But as you've already noted, we are indeed no longer in the 90's. I'd argue the technological progress in the intervening decades have rendered that frame of reference obsolete. Unlimited access to devices was by ...


71

This is anecdotal but... Throughout highschool my life was: wake-up, go to school, come home, game, go to bed, repeat. As I developed other hobbies, I did those instead of gaming. As money to buy things (new games, clothing, etc) became important to me, I did chores around the house and kept my grades up (an A at the end of the term was worth $5, a B+: $4, B:...


29

Are you looking at an addiction, or at a symptom, or just a hobby? First, "video game addiction" is not recognized as a disorder. Unlike gambling or alcoholism — where addiction can be real and very tangible — gaming addiction is heavily disputed, the tools for trying to diagnose it are crude and problematic, and in any case addiction — that is to say a ...


25

My situation is very similar to what you describe: we have multiple kids — one of whom is 9, one slightly older, and one slight younger — I grew up with mostly "unlimited" computer access (though for me it was the 80s, so no interwebs — I didn't even have a modem); and I, too, struggle with the disparity between what I was allowed to do (or should ...


24

As an avid gamer and software developer, I have never heard of a game called "Sauerbraten." I looked it up and apparently it is a first person shooter named after a German pot roast. It isn't a widely popular game created by a major video game company. It is an open-source community-made game. It also doesn't appear to be a very "good" game. Something else ...


21

In addition to all the other answers, I'd like to concentrate on the addictive behavior you described. Gaming addiction is just as real as drug addiction and very dangerous because many games, especially "harmless" free of charge mobile apps, are specifically designed to be as addictive as possible. Teenagers (which is an age your son is ...


19

Different kids need to hear different messages. Many of the tactics, stratagems, and talking points that work on younger kids or non-smokers simply will not work if you are dealing with an older teen who already smokes (e.g. kissing a smoker is like kissing an ashtray). Some of what I'm about to suggest may actually be counterproductive for a non-smoker to ...


19

when I was driving and he used bad words to me and punched to my head many time, I wanted to call 911 , but he said I will kill you later if you do it. We asked police before , but they said we can help you if something happened !! You were assaulted. Call them. The fact that he is your son only matters as far as you are responsible for him. If he will hit ...


18

The screen is not the problem. I believe we're dealing with a XY problem here. Surely screens are damaging our children irreparably. Breathe. Relax. Grab a cup of tea and consult the wikipedia list of moral panics. We've been worrying about the effects of new evil stuff on our children since forever. Listening to the devil music (Blues, Jazz, Rock and roll,...


16

I completely agree with you about it being the challenge for this generation. In my classroom I used to have to teach low-functioning children how to do tasks and to increase their attention span. I am not saying your child has a intellectual problem, but that the way to increase attention span might work for this as well. We used a three token system. ...


12

As you say in your question, the beneficial part of your access to computers was your early exposure to programming and other productive computer skills, and the part that you are concerned about is over exposure to screens as a primary source of entertainment or distraction. I think that already contains your answer, you should allow as much access as they ...


11

Not an Addiction If someone is doing something excessively we are very quick in seeing addictions nowadays. I had this myself when I was a child, I played some days up to 16 hours and I often got told I am addicted while I myself knew that I wasn't. If something more interesting or fun came up I had no problem to completely ignore any kind of media for even ...


10

The first thing is to find out why the child plays. As a pretty heavy gamer myself who has gone through a number of phases and reasons for getting lost in games, I know there can be many reasons why you get lost in a world of games. Once you know, here's some advice for three different kinds of players that I've been in the past: For the challenge When in ...


10

Don't worry about the Minecraft playing. "'Marc', since he discovered YouTube and gaming, is a huge fan of Minecraft and spends way too much time on it, at the point where it's getting obvious that he has an addiction: Before "correcting" this situation, specify your definition of "too much", and know why is that definition right. He botches his ...


8

As a 23 year old son, that also play 25h/week, i must ask you: have you tried to invite him to do something together? like bowling, or anything that he likes? I ask you this, because i usually play games if im bored (understand that there are only few things that i really think that is interesting..), so, whenever my mom/dad ask me to go to a place that i ...


8

Gamification to the rescue! What if you set up a reward system where she earns new levels and rewards for only reading during appropriate times? She gets up to pee, resists opening that book and goes back to bed: new level. Does it five times in a row: another new level. At each level (N00b, Resister, Conqueror, Super-hero, etc.) she gets a new prize/...


8

I started smoking at 17 because a girl I had a huge crush on smoked so it gave me an excuse to hang out with her. What would it have taken for her to convince me? I dunno. That girl saying no and a developing interest in a non-smoker? Yeah, I know, teenagers can be shallow and stupid. At least I can be honest about it. It didn't help that I was already ...


6

My eleven year old was getting to the point that I would consider him addicted. He was either on the computer playing an online game or he was watching TV, which I considered even worse. At least there's some brain activity required for online gaming. If we asked him to do things (get ready for bed, bring your clothes down to be washed, come down to eat ...


5

Your situation is indeed very sad. You have tried to do everything right by your son, unfortunately he has made very poor choices, which have negatively impacted everyone. I think all you can really do is try to keep yourselves safe, and never be in a situation where either of you is alone with him. Unfortunately a drug users word cannot be trusted. He may ...


5

"Considering that Matthew's craving for sugar is relentless, intense and has been ongoing for years, is it possible that his craving represents a legitimate nutritional need?" I've never heard of such a need personally. But you strike me as a grounded, sensible person trying very hard to find the best path for their child. I think offering a non-sugar ...


5

I think that @threetimes is definitely on the right track here, but I wanted to add something else as well. I have a distinct memory as a kid of taking medicine for something and then being very worried when whatever was wrong didn't immediately get better. My mom finally told me that I had to wait the length of an entire episode of Mr. Roger's ...


4

I wouldn't call this a major problem. Teenagers who drink Mountain Dew and eat hot pockets while playing video games until 4AM every night is a major problem. I would say this is mildly disruptive. She likes to read. That's awesome. I wish I could love to read like she apparently does. Maybe instead of discouraging it, you should encourage it. What is she ...


4

Many times it seems as though smoking is done for stress management, or for appearance. Appearance Everybody else is doing it. She finds one (or more) friend she likes, and her friend goes outside and they continue bonding as.. her friend smokes. The friend offers her one, and worried how it would look if she denied it, she accepts. Keep in mind that ...


4

Screen time is something to be concerned about at all ages of development for a young child. It can significantly hamper children's sleep time. "Infants exposed to screen media in evening hours have significantly shorter night-time sleep duration than those with no evening screen exposure" source from AAP Screen time (video games, television, etc) that are ...


4

Children can be odd in how they respond to illness. When one of my children was not even two he caught a stomach bug. We all did. But everyone got better within short order, then the toddler became sick again and this time he stayed sick for 10 scary days. We saw the doctor, went to emergency, it was really one of the most scary and unpleasant things I ...


4

Of course, my parents can have enough with my brother's behaviour, and decide to cut the internet. He then starts a tantrum, answer back to his mother and yells. I'm going to hazard a guess - does this result in the internet being reinstated, sooner or later? If so, this is a classic mistake. It trains the child that throwing a tantrum will get them the ...


4

As video game addictions go, Pokemon Go is one of the better ones. The value of having your child outside and walking around is tremendous. I see two possibilities here. Either he is actually addicted to the game (and if you take it away he will find another less healthy one to obsess over) or he is craving more daddy time. Either way the answer is the ...


4

I would say while Screentime is always an important decision, in this case I see it as substantially more positive than negative. Addressing your concerns He isn't isolated or using it to avoid social contact, in fact it is a bonding opportunity with his father, it is fairly rare to have an activity a child and parent both genuinely enjoy so this is a ...


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